Friday, March 28, 2008

Diary of a Farmer's Wife, Chapter Two




I slipped on my rubber boots (with capris) to take photos that coincide with this story.

Anytime a farmer and his wife post something of the same event on both of their blogs, it must be monumental. You can also read Jason's version HERE. It will pretty much be the same version of this story- minus anything to do with numbers, weight, mileage, fence height, etc, etc.

Can I just pause here for a moment??? I caught my husband doing this on my way out in my rubber boots and capris to take photos.


Yep, that is Jason watering...........the pigs. He had the biggest grin on his face and was having the 'best good time'! He is very fond of our pigs.

Okay, back to the story!

Yesterday began like any ordinary day out here on the farm. But, the day quickly became extraordinary within moments of Jason arriving with our first batch of Red Brangus heifers (which is most def a German word....don't cha think?).

We have been anticipating this moment for quite a while ever since Jason decided to go with a closed herd, which you could probably read volumes more about this on his blog. I was just thrilled that we were getting pretty and fancy (to me) cows that were going to have red hair and be good to eat.

....new cows to the left....


Jason drove up to the pasture that he was going to free the cows on to our property in. I took off with my camera in tote to capture the new fancy pretty animals. I quickly realized within seconds of him unloading them, the camera needed to come off, and the game face needed to come on.

We had one of the seven in the first batch of heifers that was a feisty gal. She wasn't too fond of her surroundings and so she decided there wasn't anything that was going to stop her.

Now, if you have been keeping up with us at all, you would know that we are doing rotational grazing. This basically means that the cows are confined to approximately two acres a day to eat everything down in that paddock before they move on to the next. Jason does this by using electrified rope- which probably has a more technical name- that can easily be moved. He is able to set up paddocks as they rotate so we don't have two acre squares fenced in all over the place. Any who......

This feisty heifer (how would you like to be called that???) took off running. She went through electric rope, electric fence, and headed toward our existing herd that was a good distance away. I think she was confused and didn't know what to do with herself.

The other six cows saw this happening and decided to run in the other direction through several layers of electrified rope. A cow running through fence is never a good thing. Especially when you don't have cowboy on a horse with a rope in his hand ready to take off after them. However, the six ran in a good direction, or at least better than the first feisty heifer. They were at least still tromping on our property and ended up in the pig pen.

I knew Jason was in for it with the feisty one, so I took off with him to offer him a hand. We decided to go on foot not knowing what the crazed cow was going to do. As we were walking towards the paddock she was in with our other herd on the FARTHEST point of the property, she must have once again freaked out and gotten spooked.

I was with our original herd (35 of them) trying to maintain order, peace, and serenity, while Jason was tending to the 'other' cow. The next thing I know is I see my hubby in all of his glory running back down the way we came towards the houses to get the 'buggy' as we call it- or Ranger. He was yelling to me as he was running that the cow had gotten out of the fence and was no longer on our property.

So I, being the farmer's wife that I am, take off in all of my glory sprinting towards HWY 105 ready to throw my entire being in front of this cow if she takes off towards the road. I was going to go 'rodeo' on her and see if I could tackle her to the ground. But, in the moment of my fierceness I realize that there is an electric fence and barbed wire separating me from the road that I was to throw myself down on.

I continue to run towards the highway with a gate in sight! As I was approaching the gate, farmer Jason was on the Ranger headed my way. All I could think to tell myself was to 'breathe' and 'push' because I was so close to making it to the fence almost at the same time Jason was to be passing the fence. The Ranger was my ticket to no longer running, which is always a winner in my books.

Jason spotted me running towards him out of the corner of his eye and decided to slow down enough for me to leap over the fence and sit my tired fanny on the seat right next to him. And off we went looking for this 'rogue' and 'Wiley' heifer. These are the two words that continued to freely flow from Jason's mouth from this moment forward. I have yet to figure out exactly what these mean. But, they sounded serious in the moment of all seriousness.

We took off down the small farm road that runs beside our property and spotted this feisty heifer hanging out on someone else's property who had cows as well. Their cows were staring at our new cow confused as to why there was a cow on the 'other' side of the fence.

Jason walked up to home to inform them of the intruding heifer. We thought we were close to ending this whole ordeal because it appeared to us that this cow was trapped within their fence around their home and gate. I stood in front of their gate, ready to throw myself in front of the cow if she took off again.

But, she once again out-smarted us and did something we've never seen. She leaped over the fence that was higher than most, and landed not so gracefully on the other side in the pasture with the neighbor's cows.

And there she still waits to this day.

Jason talked to our wonderful new found neighbor and they both agreed that it would be best for her to calm down over in the pasture that she ended up in.

So, we have this fancy new cow waiting in a pasture a few miles away from our house. It is all a blur to us. We went back and retraced the order of events that will be forever etched in our memories.

We can laugh about it now. But, at the time it wasn't funny in the least. We were panic stricken.

I learned something about our marriage and my husband yesterday. If there is ever a child or human being in danger or going crazy, Jason is ALWAYS the one to calm them down, calm me down, and rescue the situation. He is heroic.

But, anything directly related to farm mayhem he shuts down and his brain goes to Hawaii. We were a team yesterday and rogue Wiley heifer got the best of us. And now she sits in the distance of Yonder Way Farm peeking up through the field she temporarily resides in when she spots Jason coming by on the Ranger to check on her. She knows him well- already- and we will never forget her or yesterday.

Jason successfully brought in 3 more heifers and our new bull 'Pete' after that whole ordeal.

....Pete is the only bull in the photo, to the left. Isn't he 'purdy'?....

If you followed that whole entire story- wow! It was hard even getting the point across to you. We could have done the story more justice by having a video camera on us, but that is a bit inconvenient when you are leaping over fences.

For bearing with me and enduring the tales of a farmer's wife, here are a few other photos I snapped on my way out to the cows.

12 comments:

theBirkenfelds said...

All I can do is laugh.

We really need to come visit the farm!

Meg

Judy said...

Your stories always leave me laughing! What an adventure! By the way....where were your kiddos during this fiasco?
Love ya,
Judy

Mimi said...

So you and Jason are attending the School of Hard Knocks??? You write a great picture of life on the farm. (Hint, hint---I think farmers usually pen up cattle for about 2 days until they let them out in pasture. It makes them feel safe, lets the farmer get to know the cows and their habits, calms the cattle down before they are set FREE in a wide open pasture, and resident bovine and new bovine get to know each other. But I'll bet Jason and you know all this now!!!! Your photos are just beautiful. Please keep sharing them. Mimi

QuiltedSimple said...

My gosh - I have died laughing today reading yours and Jason's blogs. Wish we were closer - we would have had fun "helping you." Hopefully she will calm down and all will be well in your world in a few days!!! What a wonderful story to look back on and laugh years from now over.

Kris

QuiltedSimple said...

P.S. And capri pants? I am so envious. . . .high 30's and snow here today
Kris

winslows said...

Oh my friend. I can see you now... throwing your little self infront of an enormous COW to try to stop it from going into the highway (or wherever it was headed). Hillarious. So was this better than chasing the pigs in your robe and towel on your head that one day? Also, I have to say what a kick I got out of that first picture of Jason 'watering the pigs'...I thought he was peeing at first! Now, don't get me wrong...not that I think Jason could pee that far...hold on. This is getting wierd. Anyway, just go back and look at the picture. Funny stuff!!

Anonymous said...

oh..my..what a hoot...yep you two make a great team...hope when you get this wiley rogue back ..she will fit in with her new family herd of cows...how are all the others doing...PETE looks like he is doing pretty well...hope today was more peaceful...love mom

Kramer said...

Babe,

I never would have thought this was what we would be doing a year ago. We have come a long way on this journey. Thanks for being by my side the whole time and being such a great helpmate. Your rock.

The Kramer Family said...

Meg- yes you do! Come soon!

Judy- that is so funny that you ask that. That is a MAJOR part of the story that I left out. Aunt D and Uncle D were thankfully home so I was able to leave them there with Aunt D. We have the BEST neighbors!

Mimi- Sooooo true! Farming is a total School of Hard Knocks!

Kris- I thought about how this whole thing would have looked on your farm.....and it wasn't wearing capris! More like mittens a taboggin and three pairs of socks.

Christina- My very own BFF commented on my blog! I'm honored because I know you are anti-blog. Thanks!

Mom- All of the cows are safe and sound. The neighbors that had our crazed cow called yesterday and said they had her pinned up. Jason went and picked her up last night. All is well!

Honey- I love you! You ROCK!

Sarah Shalley said...

Soooooooooo hilarious to read about! I laughed my face off, especially at Jason's tale of ya'll running. So sorry. Are ya sore?

Kathryn, Michael & Alex said...

That is so hysterical.

You gotta love anything with red hair!!!

Anonymous said...

Dear,

You are a real tropper! Jason is one lucky guy. However, you couldn't of happened to a nicer guy.

love you all,

Js - Dad